Lifestyle Favorites | May 2015

Happy June, lovelies!  It’s finally warming up (again) here in the sunny midwest and summer is right around the corner.  I’ve thoroughly enjoyed spring this year in Chicago with lots of variety in weather as per usual!  I’m excited to share some of my favorite things from the past month with you, ranging from clothing, accessories, and beauty items to home goods, multi-media picks, and food.

All image sources that are not originally my own photos are from the links provided below.  Please be advised that some of the links provided are affiliate links and I do receive a small commission if you make a purchase using those links.  I very much appreciate your support of this blog in doing so!

Clothes & Accessories


Halogen Long Sleeve Chambray Shirt – I’ve worn this cute and comfy shirt so much since I hauled it earlier in May.  It’s the perfect weight for May weather and suits my frame nicely. I love the white square details which look more like polka dots from far away.

Cloth & Stone Sandwashed Sleeveless Buttondown – Another much worn and loved item from that same haul is this khaki toned button down tank I picked up at Anthropologie.  I love pairing it with a colorful striped cardigan from Splendid I bought a few years ago.  It’s also a great neutral piece on its own.

Simple Eco Sneaks – I’ve been wearing my too-cute-to-boot polka dot sneakers nonstop this spring.  Simple actually stopped production of their shoes back in 2011, but rumor has it they’re planning on relaunching with a new line again this fall.  I’ve had these shoes for many years and can attest to their quality.  You can sign up at Simple’s website to be alerted when they relaunch.

Midori Traveler’s Notebook – I love my passport MTN!  It allows me to keep my notebook and journals all in one place.  The size is perfect for me to take on-the-go as well.  I shared an in-depth look at the Midori Traveler’s Notebooks earlier this spring if you’re interested in learning more.



bareMinerals Ready Eyeshadow 4.0 in The Truth – If I’m not mistaken, this year marks the third spring this palette has made its way into my favorites.  It seems to be my spring go-to pick!  I love the range of taupey shades this time of year.  They have a light touch of shimmer to them and are easy to blend.

Urban Decay Naked Basics Palette – This little beauty is actually more of a year round favorite, but I’ve been reaching for it more frequently this month to pair with the bareMinerals palette so I thought I’d include it.  I like to think of this collection of matte eyeshadows as the perfect palette extender.  It has all the shades I need to finish my eye look in palettes that may be missing a good highlighter, crease, or eyeliner color.

Julep Iconic Brow Gel – If you’ve been following my content for awhile now, you know I’m always on the hunt for the next best brow gel.  I need all the help I can get to tame my wild brows!  I actually received Julep’s version as an add-on in my last Maven Box and I am so happy that I did because it quickly climbed to the top of my list of all-time favorite brow gels.  The tiny brush combined with the great formula makes for a unique product that does exactly what I am looking for in a brow gel.

Sigma Lip Base in Indulgent – I’ve finally seen the light when it comes to lip pencils and it’s all thanks to this lip base from Sigma.  Using it really extends the wear time of my lip products.  This peachy rose shade perfectly matches my other two favorite lip products this month as well, making for the perfect trio.

Bite Beauty Butter Cream Lipstick in Heather – I hauled this creamy lippy earlier this spring because I was drawn to the bright rosy shade.  It’s both super pigmented and incredibly creamy.  Win win!

Urban Decay Naked Ultra Nourishing Lipgloss – The final part of my spring lip trifecta is this wonderful lipgloss.  It’s the perfect rosy pink to match the aforementioned lip pencil and lipstick and adds just a hint of shimmer for a moist finish.  I really like the formula of this gloss, which is neither too thick nor too sticky.  It’s just right!

Home Goods

may-favorites-2015-home-goodsMrs. Meyer’s Lemon Verbena Liquid Dish Soap – I’ve used and loved this same dish soap for years.  Not only is it biodegradable, but it cleans well and has a great scent.  I had no idea that this longtime favorite of mine could be replaced by something new….

Honest Lemon Verbena Dish Soap – ….Enter The Honest Co.’s newly reformulated dish soap.  It’s non-toxic, ultra-concentrated, pH balanced, and biodegradable.  Plus, you get 65% more soap for the same price as Mrs. Meyer’s.  I actually prefer this lemon verbena scent to the other one.  It’s a bit lighter and brighter.  Bonus!

Ocelo Sponges – Another standby favorite for me over the years are ocelo sponges.  I use the No Scratch Scrub ones for washing dishes and the standard Handy version for wiping down counters and cleaning up around the kitchen.  They’re effective at cleaning and last a long time.  I also love that they come in fun, bright colors.




The Bedwetter by Sarah Silverman – I finished listening to Silverman’s laugh-out-loud book this past month.  By the time I got to the end, it ranked as one of my favorites out of all the female comedian/writer autobiographies I’ve listened to over the last year.  Silverman’s unassuming, down-to-earth style makes it feel like you’re listening to a friend recount funny stories.  I high recommend it!  Special Offer! Try a 30-Day free trail at here.

Piece by Piece by Kelly Clarkson – I’ve been a Kelly Clarkson fan for years ever since the release of her debut album in 2003.  Not only does she have an amazingly powerful voice, her music is uplifting and spirited.  I love her pick-yourself-up can-do attitude.  Her music is relatable and catchy.  I’ve been belting along with her in the car all month!

Grace and Frankie – Don and I started watching this Netflix original series after his parents highly recommended it.  The show follows two women whose husbands figure out they are truly in love with each other and want to get married.  It is both hilarious and poignant at the same time with an incredibly talented cast.  Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin are certainly a dynamic duo!  I’m super excited the show has been picked up for a second season to be released next year.

Elle Fowler – Elle was one of the very first YouTuber’s I started watching back in early 2010 as I was looking for guidance on how to apply makeup, something I had pretty much no prior experience in.  I quickly became smitten with Elle’s channel and her bubbly personality.  I have been a loyal follower ever since!  Last fall Elle broke her back in an unfortunate accident and was forced to take 6 months away from her online work in order to recover.  I so admire her strength in dealing with this unexpected upheaval of her life.  She recently started posting videos again despite not being fully recovered just yet.  I am inspired not only by her determination, but also by the fact that she has not let her circumstances change her optimistic and cheery disposition.  I applaud her efforts and wish her all the best in making a full recovery and hope she continues to share her bright smile with the world.

I Heart You Coffee – I also wanted to share about one of Elle’s blogs which happens to be a personal favorite of mine.  It’s no surprise that I like this lifestyle blog since I am such a fan of Elle’s videos, because it’s another way to experience her personality.  In it she shares personal anecdotes, products and companies she’s loving, and tidbits about her planner obsession, especially when it comes to stickers.  A girl after my own heart!

Tasty Treats


In my favorites video (see below) I mentioned knowing I’d talked about my favorite low fat cottage cheese from Horizon Organics before, but I thought it was last year, not just last month.  Oops!  It’s clearly been on the top of my list this spring.  I love combining it with organic fresh berries for a delightfully refreshing breakfast or snack.  I do prefer to buy organic berries if I can, because they rank higher on the list of fruits and vegetables that can absorb more toxins.  I always turn to the ever handy Dirty Dozen app on my phone to see what produce I should buy organic and which doesn’t really matter.  In general, the more porous the skin is, the more toxins fruit or veggies will absorb.  In addition to ranking produce in terms of most “dirty,” the app also provides the Clean Fifteen list which is a great quick reference to see what is most safe to buy conventional versions as opposed to organic.

If you’d like to hear more about my May favorites, check out this video:

It’s giveaway time! I wanted to share the awesomeness that is the Naked Basic palettes with you.  The May 2015 Favorites Giveaway will run until Thursday, June 11, 2015 at 6 PM CT.  The giveaway is open internationally.  All entrants under the age of 18 must have parental permission to enter.  TWO winners will receive a Naked Basics palette and a Naked Flushed palette.

may favorites 2015 giveaway

You can enter by following the directions in the Rafflecopter widget posted below (check out this blog post for more information on entering Rafflecopter giveaways).  I’ll announce the winners on THIS blog post and contact them directly through email, as always.  Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sometimes Rafflecopter experiences technical difficulties. If you can’t enter for some reason, try again later and it will probably work.

I would love to know what some of your May favorites were if you care to share.  Happy June!


 * Post contains affiliate links.  This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are genuinely my own. *


25 thoughts on “Lifestyle Favorites | May 2015”

  1. I can’t even tell you how excited I would be to win this giveaway! I absolutely love your videos. Have a blessed day 🙂

  2. Hi Jen! You are a breath of fresh air! Love your channel and can’t wait for the new release at the end of June!

  3. e b the paint color in your room! matched your shirt and bedsheets very well! can’t wait to see the office and the entire bedroom

  4. Thanks for all the great tips! There are a couple of musicians I’d love to share with you. Taylor Mathews (America’s Got Talent 2010) has awesome music. Brandon and Savannah, nka The Heirs (America’s Got Talent – 2013) are an up-and-coming duo – they are 16 and 18. And, finally, R5. If you watched “Dancing with the Stars” this past season, you’ll know Riker, their bassist. All three of these groups/people are super nice and are worth taking a listen to. (I’ll let you know when/if my daughter ever gets her music off the ground.)

    Anyway, I’ve loved your vlogs and blogs since my husband turned me onto them a while back. Keep up the good work.

  5. Thanks for sharing your favorites again this month! I really enjoy hearing about the products you use and like! Also, thanks for the food love…I have just found out I have severe iron deficiency so I have been trying to eat more healthy and I really like to hear what people say about what they buy. Thanks once again for sharing. I love the new bedroom paint color but even more I love seeing Miss Winnie…she is absolutely the cutest…:) Have a great weekend!

  6. Hi jen love the video I saw your cottage cheese and berry post on your Facebook post a while back and had to try it . This has become my go to breakfast as well as egg scrambles in pita bread . I love reading about your favorites and thought I’d share a couple make up favorites of mine this spring I’ve been really into the elf long Las lustrous eyeshadow collection and the bars lip pencils from sephora . I also am living Gloria lilly’s pet beds . for lilly as there unique and go nicely with the decor in my room. Thanks for the favorites I’ll have to check out the new series

  7. Loving the new wall color.Your house always looks beautiful.I always look forward to watching all of your videos.Thanks for sharing!

  8. Thanks for sharing your favorites again this month! I think i’m going to check out that Netflix series. 🙂

    What’s the name of the site you’ve mentioned in the past that you use to research new beauty products? I can’t remember and I want to check out some face lotion with SPF options.

  9. Thank you for this lovely post and the giveaway!
    I just watched your video,I really enjoyed!
    Love your favorites!
    Wish you a fab weekend!

  10. im curious on the brow gel. im looking for a new one. i use anastasia right now but i feel like if i accidently use to much (its clear how can i even tell!) it makes my brows look wet and they are crunchy and i end up combing it out. does this one do anything like that ?

  11. I have hemmed and hawed over that Naked basics palette foreverrrr, would love to win!!
    My favorites last month have been the Benefit Roller Lash mascara, Tocca Cleopatra perfume, Make Up Forever Artist Plexi-Gloss in Sweet Pink, Juice Beauty Green Apple hand lotion and cookie ice cream sandwiches from Trader Joe’s

    1. Yes there are multiple ways to enter. All you need to do is answer the poll question through the widget and you are entered.

  12. So funny, I LOVE the Mrs. Meyers dish soap also…but made the change to Honest! I don’t know why, but I like it so much better! I also use the same sponges as you! I usually am not a “product junkie” but for certain things I am! 🙂

  13. I have been able to watch you in a while but tonight I watched your ECLP video and your May Favs. Loved them both!

  14. Hi Jen, I’m a new follower of yours and now I can’t stop watching all of your videos. You help me enjoy my alone time a little bit more. Thanks for sharing so much great stuff! 🙂

  15. Hi, Jen! I’m new to your blog and absolutely love it. Honestly, you are solely responsible for helping me to get my bathroom & closet organized. Also, I just got my 3rd Shih Tzu puppy & have really enjoyed all your helpful grooming videos. This one’s going to be a little squirt at 5 lbs. & I’ve decided she’s going to be a bow wearer. Thanks for turning me on to Doggie Bow Ties. My bank accounts a little emptier but the bows are just too cute to pass up.

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